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Amnesty International criticizes Supreme Court sentence on independence leaders

Human rights organization calls for immediate release of Sànchez and Cuixart and claims that verdict is based on "vague" definition of sedition

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16 November 2019 06:20 PM

by

ACN|Barcelona

Amnesty International has criticized the Spanish Supreme Court sentence for the 9 jailed Catalan independence leaders behind the 2017 referendum and calls for the immediate release of ANC activist turned politician Jordi Sànchez and Òmnium activist Jordi Cuixart.

Additionally, the human rights organization claims that the verdict is based on a "vague" definition of the crime of sedition and an interpretation that is "too broad and dangerous."

AI had announced that it would go public with its findings on the case next Tuesday, but the organization's French website posted them on Friday and has since deleted them, although Vilaweb online newspaper has reported on their contents. 

According to AI, which has centered its complaints on the treatment of Sànchez and Cuixart, neither of whom were politicians at the time of the referendum, freedom of expression and peaceful assembly are under threat in Spain.

As for the 7 politicians who have been sentenced to up to 13 years in prison, AI maintains that the "imprecision" regarding the crime of sedition and the ample room for interpretation on its true meaning "cast doubt on the sedition sentence" they face.

Amnesty International concludes by stating that "peaceful" civil disobedience is "protected by international human rights law" and that "excessive" charges "for acts of civil disobedience wrongfully restrict peaceful assembly and violates international law."

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  • Pro-independence activists Jordi Sànchez (right) and Jordi Cuixart arrive in the Supreme Court (by Roger Pi de Cabanyes)

  • Pro-independence activists Jordi Sànchez (right) and Jordi Cuixart arrive in the Supreme Court (by Roger Pi de Cabanyes)

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